CHRISTINE, Texas - A 17-year-old Jourdanton High School junior is dead after he was accidentally shot by his father Monday evening.
"It was a tragic accident," Atascosa County Sheriff David Soward said.
Soward said Vicente Valero, 17, was sitting at a table in the family's home across from his father as his father was working on a 45-caliber handgun.
The sheriff said the boy's father thought the gun was unloaded when it suddenly fired one bullet. The bullet hit the father's finger before striking his son in the chest, killing his only child, the sheriff said.
Soward said he does not expect to file any charges against the boy's father.
Family members gathered at the home of Valero's grandparents. They said his parents were so emotionally overcome that they didn't want to share a photograph of their son.
Jourdanton Independent School District Superintendent Teresa McAllister said Valero was friendly and well-liked. She said he was in the school band and on the robotics team. He was also involved in the school's agricultural program and loved horses.
McAllister said counselors from area school districts were available for students, teachers and staff affected by Valero's death.
The sheriff said it was Atascosa County's first fatal accidental shooting in recent memory.
Soward said it should serve as a sad reminder to "not only double-, but triple-check all the time."
"People think the gun is unloaded, and in fact, it's not," he said.
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